As we know, time doesn’t stand still. But when a Parisian apartment was opened up after being abandoned for 70 years – those inside felt like it had.
The apartment contained treasures from the past worth a fortune. Photographs were taken of the findings, and also the mysterious story was shared online. Both have captivated people around the world.
A woman named Mrs. de Florian was the last person to live in the upscale residence, located in the Pigalle area.
When she was 23, Mrs. de Florian locked her apartment door one day and left for Southern France. The year was 1939 and it’s believed she was fleeing Paris because of World War II. Oddly though, she never returned to collect her belongings over the course of her lifetime.
Mrs. de Florian continued paying rent on the apartment until she passed away at 91-years-old.
After heirs learned of the sealed residence in Paris, they hired auctioneer, Olivier Choppin-Janvry, to go inside and take inventory of what was left behind. Little did they know there would be an unbelievable discovery.
Choppin-Janvry and his team of experts unlocked the apartment.
When they walked inside, everyone was amazed by what they saw. They compared the experience to being like “stumbling into the castle of Sleeping Beauty.”
For 70 years the charming apartment sat untouched, and so did all of the materials inside. It was as if the calendar had magically turned back to decades before.
The rooms were full of elegant furniture pieces and decor that reflected the era.
In one room, the team discovered a young Mrs. de Florian’s vanity table. It was covered with vintage beauty items, almost as if she never left.
It was apparent the de Florians lived lavishly.
According to the Monagiza website, drawers and closets were full of expensive possessions – from jewelry to upper-class clothing. The team also snapped photos of some childish ones too that were sitting on the ground.
Many items of value had been collecting dust for decades, but one stood out.
A painting was found of a lovely woman wearing a pink dress, who turned out to be Mrs. de Florian’s grandmother, Marthe de Florian. That’s not all though. Experts concluded that it was painted by renowned Italian artist, Giovanni Boldini, from the Belle Époque era.
There was more to the story.
Marthe de Florian originally owned the apartment. She was a socialite and actress during the time, and also had many lovers – one of them being Giovanni Boldini.
The team came across a stack of romantic letters that contained a love note confirming their affair (as Boldini was married at the time). He painted his muse Marthe when she was just 24-years-old.
The art piece sold for a fortune.
After being brought to auction, Boldini’s painting of Marthe was purchased for a whopping $3 million dollars. It was the artist’s most valuable painting ever sold.
It seems Mrs. de Florian left to stay safe during the war. But why she never returned to the enchanting apartment in Paris remains a mystery.
For 70 years, the rooms stayed silent and her beautiful possessions collected layers of dust. Although the truth may never be known – it’s certainly fascinating to see a place frozen in time.
Watch the video below for more on this very intriguing story!
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